6/29/2004 - Cypress Semiconductor Corp. (NYSE: CY) and Atmel® Corp. (NASDAQ: ATML) jointly announced that Atmel will manufacture and sell chips based on Cypress’s industry-leading 2.4 GHz WirelessUSBTM technology. WirelessUSB chips are currently used in low-data rate wireless devices, such as PC keyboards, mice and video game controllers, and are being designed into a wide array of applications, including remote controls, toys and sensors.
According to the agreement announced, Atmel will license Cypress’s WirelessUSB technology and algorithms, being capable of shipping compatible devices as of Q3 this year in what both companies say is an important step toward open standardization of the technology. The technology will be offered and supported via Atmel’s sales and support channels, while also continuing to be offered by Cypress.
"Cypress has put the concept of WirelessUSB on the map, with a family of products that resonates with manufacturers," said Scott Smyser, senior analyst, frequency control, RF and wireless at iSuppli Corp. "Atmel's addition to the WirelessUSB team will give customers the added flexibility of being able to design with a true multi-source solution. This will help drive adoption of the technology and put WirelessUSB on a path to becoming a predominant solution for the point-to-point wire replacement space.""WirelessUSB is the right technology for the wireless desktop, providing a simple, low-cost, low-power alternative to other wireless standards like Bluetooth® and other offerings," said Bob McConnell, Vice President and General Manager, RF and Automotive Business Unit at Atmel. "We’ve seen so much interest from major OEMs that we believe this technology is well on its way to becoming the de-facto standard for low-data-rate wireless connectivity. Atmel aims to add to this momentum."
WirelessUSB, a robust, radio-system-on-a-chip technology introduced by Cypress in late 2002, has been shipping in production since December 2003 and has secured several major customer design wins, including Saitek and NMB. The technology is noted for its sub-$2 price tag, immunity to interference and ease of integration. WirelessUSB was engineered to address the non-networking-end of the wireless world, targeting point-to-point and multipoint-to-point applications that today are largely served by proprietary solutions based on 27 MHz, 433 MHz, 868 MHz and 900 MHz technologies.
Cathal Phelan, vice president of Cypress’s Personal Communications Division, said that Atmel is an ideal WirelessUSB partner. "Like Cypress, Atmel has its own, low-cost, high-quality manufacturing capabilities and is well-entrenched in embedded markets, providing good synergy between the two companies."
"We are seeing great interest in WirelessUSB from the world’s largest keyboard, mouse and game controller makers, many of which are planning product launches for the end-of-year holiday shopping season," Phelan added.
With a transceiver (CYWUSB6934 from Cypress and ATR2434 from Atmel) price starting at $1.95 in 100,000-unit quantities, WirelessUSB LS offers the best combination of performance and cost versus competing wireless technologies. WirelessUSB LS devices communicate at distances of up to 10 meters, with an average latency of less than four milliseconds and a transmission rate of 62.5 kbps. Featuring a highly integrated radio transceiver plus digital baseband on a single chip, the technology enables designers to significantly decrease development time, component count and system cost while improving operating range, power-consumption and latency. WirelessUSB devices employ a unique patent-pending approach to avoid electrical interference, that combines bi-directional Direct Sequence Spread Spectrum (DSSS) data transmission techniques, pre-defined pseudo-noise codes and dynamic channel switching to create a frequency-agile solution with excellent processing gain for guaranteed wireless data delivery. Operating in the 2.4 GHz global ISM band, the device also allows customers to deploy their solutions worldwide, regardless of regional frequency requirements. Earlier this year, the company also introduced a 50-meter version of the product, WirelessUSB LR, for long-range commercial and industrial applications.
Cypress Semiconductor Corp. (NYSE: CY) is Connecting From Last Mile to First MileTM with high-performance solutions for personal, network access, enterprise, metro switch and core communications-system applications. Cypress ConnectsTM using wireless, wireline, digital and optical transmission standards, including USB, Fibre Channel, SONET/SDH, Gigabit Ethernet and DWDM. Leveraging its process and system-level expertise, Cypress makes industry-leading physical layer devices, framers and network search engines, along with a broad portfolio of high-bandwidth memories, timing technology solutions and reconfigurable mixed-signal arrays. More information about Cypress is accessible online at www.cypress.com.
Founded in 1984, Atmel Corporation is headquartered in San Jose, Calif., with manufacturing facilities in North America and Europe. Atmel designs, manufactures and markets worldwide, advanced logic, mixed-signal, nonvolatile memory and RF semiconductors. Atmel is also a leading provider of system-level integration semiconductor solutions using CMOS, BiCMOS, SiGe, and high-voltage BCDMOS process technologies.
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